A guide to some of the most popular building programs
If you poke around Minecraft.net for all the lovely builds that we feature, you’ve probably seen some strange names pop up when we’ve asked their builders just how they did it. What’s a WorldEdit? Who’s Voxel Sniper? What is all this technobabble Minecraft-jargon? Nurse!
Calm down, we’re here to help! WorldEdit, Voxel Sniper and more are handy tools some builders use to help with their Minecraft creations. Some people love to build block by block, but if you’re making something like a giant dragon, detailed home, or beautiful sculpture, these editing tools can provide lots of useful assistance.
So we thought we’d compile this handy guide to some of the most common building tools we’ve seen featured builders use!
Probably the most commonly used, WorldEdit is a very flexible program that you can be used in single player or added to servers. WorldEdit has all kinds of features, like quickly placing thousands of blocks at a time, copying and pasting areas of your build, and teleporting around like the building wizard you are. In fact, there are over a hundred techniques available to use!
Builder Arvid Lind is a fan of WorldEdit, and he uses it to create realistic-looking houses as part of his many interior design builds. Though he says it isn’t essential, it can speed up the process so that you don’t have to do all that block-by-block placement yourself!
Many, many people use WorldEdit, whether they are building a football pitch, checking that their vehicles are all nice and symmetrical, or just creating fantastic artworks like Shaliquinn’s “Fox and The Moon”.
If you’re interested in learning more about WorldEdit, first visit their website. You can also check out some tutorial videos on YouTube. My favourite is this one, showing how you can delete an entire mountain in seconds. That’s a powerful ability – and perfect for creating a neat flat area so that building can start right away!
Dragon creator Roman opted for something that’s less heavy on the computer power, since older equipment can have difficulty running the more extravagant programs. He uses MCEdit, which uses less rendering but has just as many clever tricks up its sleeve.
You can see in our piece about Roman how he creates a majestic dragon “sphere by sphere” – it’s not an easy process just because there are some tools involved! However, Roman’s projects can be up to a thousand blocks long, so you can see why he wouldn’t want to put them in one at a time.
You can find out more about MCEdit from its website here.
As the name might suggest, Voxel Sniper can help you with big builds by allowing you to make changes from a long distance. In essence, this program is made up of many “brushes” that can be used just like a painter’s brush.
These can be used to make sweeping changes like terraforming or to get into the nitty-gritty details – it’s all up to the user! Lots of builders featured here have had a helping hand from Voxel Sniper, like Gabriel’s amazing sculpture inspired by his childhood.
This program is a bit more complex, so it’s probably best to take a wander through the wiki first if you want to learn more.
This one’s helpful for when you’re building something bigger than just one sculpture – like a whole world! It’s a map generation tool that allows for the creation of continents, oceans, snow biomes, trees, and all those good things you find out in nature.
Some talented terraformers featured here have used it to build glacial mountains or beautiful forest meadows. Again, it’s all about using your creativity. Here’s where you can find out more about WorldPainter.
REMEMBER: NO TOOLS REQUIRED
Prefer to build the old-fashioned way, block-by-painstakingly-placed block? That’s perfect! Every approach to building in Minecraft is valid. Plus, even with the help of these tools, creating great builds still requires practice and dedication.
So go play Minecraft however you like, build something brilliant – and do it your way!
- Jay Castello